On Wednesday, April 26, the Federal Highway Administration and the Vermont Agency of Transportation will release for public review an Environmental Assessment of the proposed plan for Middlebury's Rail and Bridge Project.
The public will have 30 days in which to review and comment on the document. A public meeting will take place in Middlebury on May 11 at 7 PM at Town Hall Theater. Earlier that afternoon, from 4 PM to 6 PM, the community will have an opportunity to meet and discuss the project informally with members of the EA project team.
The Environmental Assessment process is defined and regulated by the National Environmental Protection Act and takes the form of a document that examines the proposed project's purpose and need, alternative approaches to the project, and the environmental impacts of the proposed project. In Middlebury's case, these range from impacts on wetlands, traffic, and wildlife to impacts on surface water, groundwater, and historic resources. The main document totals some 200 pages.
A hard copy of the EA will be available for review at Ilsley Library and at the Town Offices. You can also review the document online at the VTrans project website, where you can also read the press release announcing the availability of the EA: http://vtrans.vermont.gov/projects/middlebury.
Public comments can be communicated directly to VTrans and FHWA representatives at the public meeting, by email at Middlebury@vhb.com, or by writing to the FHWA Environmental Program Manager at the following address:
Kenneth R. Sikora
Environmental Program Manager
Federal Highway Administration
Federal Building, Suite 216
87 State Street
Montpelier, VT 05602-9505